Marvellous Margaret celebrates her 105th birthday

Margaret Rhodes celebrates her 105th birthday with the her family. From left to right, they are: grand-daughter Sally Dilks, great grandsons Oliver and Harry Dilks, son John Rhodes, great great grandson Arlo George Tranter, great grand-daughter Lauren Tranter, great grandson Louis Britton and grand-daughter Susie Rhodes Best
Margaret Rhodes celebrates her 105th birthday with the her family. From left to right, they are: grand-daughter Sally Dilks, great grandsons Oliver and Harry Dilks, son John Rhodes, great great grandson Arlo George Tranter, great grand-daughter Lauren Tranter, great grandson Louis Britton and grand-daughter Susie Rhodes Best

One of Mansfield’s oldest residents has celebrated her 105th birthday in her own home, where she still lives.

Margaret Rhodes enjoyed her momentous day with her family, which now spans five generations. They laid on a special tea party for her.

Margaret Rhodes, who is one of Mansfield's oldest residents at 105.

Margaret Rhodes, who is one of Mansfield's oldest residents at 105.

Margaret is living proof of the success of Mansfield District Council’s assist and lifeline scheme.

Grand-daughter Sally Dilks said: “My grandma is fiercely independent. It is extremely important for her to live in her own home.

“She does this thanks to the council’s scheme, which means help is on hand 24 hours a day.”

Although she has suffered a loss of hearing, Margaret does not have any serious illnesses and is not on any medication. She says the secret to her long life is keeping active.

Around her neck, Margaret wears a lifeline pendant, which can be buzzed to alert call operators if she needs help in an emergency.

She once fell in her garden, but pressed for help and the operators immediately contacted her family.

Coun Barry Answer, the council’s portfolio holder for housing, said: “Margaret is proof of the tremendous benefit our service brings in helping people live in their own homes for longer.

“I am sure we would all salute her for reaching this great age with her level of independence.”

Margaret was born in Mansfield Woodhouse in March, 1914 and became a nanny in Bilsthorpe to the family of the manager of a coal mine.

She married James Rhodes and they moved to Eakring. When he died in 1982, she moved back to Mansfield to be closer to her family, which now comprises one son, John, two grandchildren, seven great grandchildren and two great great grandchildren.

As well as one of the town’s most senior citizens, Margaret is also one of its most resourceful and devoted recyclers, finding new uses for a vast array of items.

Grand-daughter Susie Rhodes Best said: “Old tights have become elastic bands, old vests have been turned into carrier bags, and tea bags and egg shells are used to keep pests off her plants!”

Until recently, Margaret also used to enjoy walks to her local park with her family.